Friday, February 05, 2010

spouting about childbirth

I just have to interject in here (between the parts of my birth story) that the thing I learned about child birth is that there is no perfect birth. My biggest disappointment with pregnancy and childbirth was that there was a ton of misinformation out there and it really feels (at least it did to me) that you have to pick a side. You are either going natural or you are going medical intervention. It also seemed to me that both sides negated the worth of the other side and that was tough. I felt like my doctor did not ever listen to me regarding my wish for an epidural free labor, and I feel like our Bradley coach was a misinformed idiot who spouted a bunch of crap selling it as science. I'm not saying all Bradley teachers are like this, but our's was.

I felt ironically more unprepared for childbirth by taking the class and by discussing things at length with my doctor because I got a multitude of conflicting information. At no point did I feel confident in any choice because I felt like I could never get a straight answer. And maybe that's the problem right there. There just isnt' a straight answer and you just have to choose the course that's right for you. Go with your gut, and my gut told me early on that perhaps this doctor was not the doctor for me. But logically he was because he knew me, he knew my history, he had performed surgery on me the previous year and I sort of credited him for even getting my pregnant (Brett won't appreciate that line) because he helped me with endometriosis and I did get pregnant. But, I should have followed my gut. I'm not saying I would have found a doctor that was into the natural birth, but I certainly would have found a doctor that would have listened to me and talked to me about things like they were real options and not just propaganda from Mothering magazine (which I subscribe to by the by).

Who knows? I do wish things had gone differently. I do, I have to be honest about that, but I also don't, because my Magnolia is here and she is perfect. She is a dream. She is magic. I'm greatful for medicine and for talented surgeons and for anesthesia. I am greatful for baby monitors and relaxation techniques and bonding with my husband during those ridiculous Bradley classes. I am greatful that I have enough presence of mind not to completely drink the kool-aid and mostly I am greatful that I have this little family. A family that has not slept in nigh on 12 weeks, but a family nonetheless. I am not a religious woman, and truth be told, the experience of becoming a mom has made me even less religious (more on that maybe later) but I do believe that nature and the creation of life is some amazing shit. Mind blowing really. Having Magnolia has connected me to the world and to humanity in a way that I feel is a true gift. I am lucky.



Fran said...

You are not crazy!! You are right!! There is no perfect birth but any time Mommy and baby go home and become a family, it's pretty darn close.

Sarah said...

Warning: novella ahead.
You know what, you can pick apart even the most intervention-free, natural birth in the world and find things that didn't go perfectly, things to torture yourself with. I remain angry that my doctor with Addy didn't tell me before doing an episiotomy and then using suction for a FIVE POUND baby, and that with Eli, a much larger baby, he DIDN'T do an episiotomy because, as he claimed, "I was pushing too fast" (bullshit, by the way- Addy was born in less time than Eli.) I deeply regret having to take such strong pain meds AFTER Eli's birth, to counteract the pain from the horrendous tear I got thanks to NO EPISIOTOMY, and that weaning off those drugs a week later made postpartum a whole new level of hell.
All that to say, I think what matters in any birth is the health of the baby and mom, obviously, and then, how you FEEL about the birth. If you're able to come out feeling like more of a person, not less, then that's a success in my book. Not every birth is straightforward and beautiful- some are complicated and messy and are full of hard choices right from the get go.
The die hards would probably tell you that the c section happened because you agreed to be induced, and one intervention leads to another. But were the die hards in your shoes when your doctor was telling you that he was worried about your baby's heart and that he really thought it was time for her to come? Would they have had to live with themselves if you had refused an induction and then something bad happened? No. You made the best choices you could with the info you had, and now you are a mom. Period. Happily ever after.
Congratulations to all of you. She is a lovely lovely baby.
And on a lighter note, your story made me almost WANT a c section so I could have a sweet anesthesiologist call me "babushka"!

Jess said...

This picking a side thing is SO FRUSTRATING. I think you are right that the most important thing is to pick a care provider who you trust and who listens to you. So now you know, for any future pregnancies, and in the meantime you have this wonderful daughter and that's all that matters.

Penny said...

It's so hard not to fall down the rabbit hole of hating and regrets with the birth thing, especially with the birth thing. Your doctor not listening to you was assholish, that sucks.

But! Your child needed to be born at 39 weeks and that required a lot of interventions and that shit is fucking hard to breath away, bradley or not. Perhaps another doctor would have listened and held off on the epidural, which would have granted you a few more hours of a lot of pain and then...well, we'll never know, right? Maybe you would have got a vaginal, pain management-free birth, or maybe you would have ended up right where you are now only cursing something else.

My point is this: the mindfucking happens, but the shadow it can cast over a birth is so shitty. And ultimately, unnecessary. Which I could never figure out until birth #2. Ceasing rambling now.

Marie Green said...

I felt very forced into my first c-section, and I too felt that I should have switched doctors. But who really does that? Especially the first time around, I think most women will not leave their doctors even when the red lights start blinking.

(The next time around we tend to be pickier, which is good I guess. =) )

Anyway, I've been there, wishing things would have gone differently but also feeling so grateful for how things turned out (health all around!).

amber said...

Magnolia is beautiful! (her name as well). I'm happy for you & Brett. Looking forward to more cute baby photos!

Sherry said...

that was cool, i never thought the way you told me in this blog. you got
amazing blog thank you and keep it up.


Sherry said...

that was cool, i never thought the way you told me in this blog. you got
amazing blog thank you and keep it up.


artemisia said...


joven said...

hi, you have nice blog.. u can view also mine..